Clinton fails to find favour with Baghdad

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The Independent Online
BAGHDAD (Reuter) - Iraq's Deputy Prime Minister, Tariq Aziz, yesterday said his country sought no confrontation with the United States but was not happy so far with the stance of the new administration. 'We do not want to be in continuous confrontation,' Mr Aziz said in an interview with CNN television. But he accused President Bill Clinton's Defense Secretary, Les Aspin, of 'an arrogant and belligerent response' to Iraq's offer of a ceasefire.

Asked for his response, the White House spokesman, George Stephanopoulos, held to the hardline stance against Iraq begun by the former president, George Bush, saying it must comply with UN ceasefire terms from the Gulf war. 'We need full compliance with all UN resolutions. That is America's policy,' he said.

Yesterday in Paris an Iraqi nationalist spokesman said that at least 10 people had been killed and more than 50 wounded by Iraqi artillery in Kurdish areas of north Iraq on Sunday and Monday. He said reports had been received from the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan of shelling on Sunday in Chamchamal, 25 miles east of Kirkuk. Shelling continued yesterday near the Kurdish-held city of Arbil.